Past exhibition

Sean Scully. Géographies

28.04.2024 – 16.06.2024

Sean Scully (born 1945 in Dublin, Ireland) is widely regarded as one of the most important and influential abstract artists living today, whose work marked a paradigm shift in American art from minimalism to an emotive form of abstraction with a return to metaphor and spirituality, such as they can be found in the European painting tradition. Important exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the National Gallery in London have underlined his position as one of the great masters of contemporary painting.
The Irish-American artist is best known for his large-scale paintings, which consist of vertical and horizontal bands, mosaic-like blocks and geometric shapes with gradations and color shifts. He also works in a variety of different media including sculpture, watercolor, pastel, printmaking and photography. His work combines influences from American abstraction – including Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko – as well as European tradition with echoes of John Constable, Henri Matisse, Édouard Vuillard and Piet Mondrian.
The Ludwig Museum in Koblenz shows 35 paintings, as well as watercolors, pastels and drawings by the artist. “Géographies” focuses on Scully’s life stages and travels. It’s about places where he lives, works and which particularly inspired him.
Scully reflects here on seeing and experiencing the world and reflects this in his abstract works, which are imbued with great life experience and sensitivity. The nucleus of his work is New York, where he has lived since 1975, the vibrant Barcelona, where Antoni Gaudí inspired him, as well as the monastery on Montserrat. This is followed by Mooseurach near Munich, where he taught as a professor of painting at the Academy of Fine Arts between 2002 and 2007, and London, which offered a lot of experience and inspiration right from the start of his artistic career. Longer stays in Morocco, where he left in 1969 and which influenced him through its intense colorism and ornamentation, as well as southern France, where Scully regularly returns and where he absorbs a special light full of lightness and warmth, are central to his overall work.
In addition to the abstract works, the exhibition brings together two important cycles: “Eleuthera”, created between 2015 and 2018, and “Ghost”, in which Sean Scully critically examines the unrestricted, deadly use of weapons in the USA between 2016 and 2020.
The exhibition is supported by the Peter and Irene Ludwig Foundation.
Informations regarding the opening of the exhibition, Sean Scully’s donations and the program during the exhibition: here
Sean Scully,

Sean Scully, “Cut Ground Green”, 2008 © Sean Scully. Photo: courtesy of the artist


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